The ministries of Tourism, Arts, Culture and Sport; Health; and Municipal Affairs, WorkSafeBC; six local governments and the Canada West Ski Areas Association or CWSAA, have been working together to reduce COVID-19 transmission in ski communities.
Since the start of the pandemic, Whistler, Sun Peaks, Rossland, Revelstoke, Invermere and Fernie have had working groups focused on preventing COVID-19 transmission that include ski operators, municipalities, community destination marketing organizations, chambers of commerce and local health authorities.
Actions undertaken by the CWSAA in advance of and during the winter season include developing a COVID-19 safety protocol document and a partnership with the Canadian Ski Council to develop the ‘Ski Well, Be Well,’ website.
Since BC ski resorts play a vital role in the province’s economic recovery by generating revenue and employment throughout the winter months. Ski resorts play an important role in enhancing the lives of local residents by providing access to safe outdoor activities for mental well-being and maintaining a healthy lifestyle throughout the pandemic.
There are 37 ski areas throughout British Columbia, most of which are community based and primarily serve rural communities.
There are 13 ski areas considered destination ski areas, and many of these are the primary employer and key economic driver within their region.
The ski industry in B.C. is a significant contributor to the provincial economy through $2 billion in expenditures annually and over 21,000 jobs.
Information about the CWSAA “Be the Reason We All Have a Season” campaign: https://skibcstrong.ca/
Online information for “Ski Well, Be Well”: http://skiwellbewell.ca/